By: Steve Pados, Accord Speedway Media
The East Coast flirted with temperatures in the mid 90’s for most of the week. Nevertheless and despite oppressive heat, the Catskill Mountains came alive on Friday evening and a great band of loyal racing fans came out to witness an eight feature race card presented by Kingston Collision with two locations in Kingston, New York. (www.kingstoncollision.com) Accord Speedway Promoters Gary and Donna Palmer had the speedway grounds in pristine condition as always and the great track work prep by Gary Palmer presented the drivers with an over the top and super quick racing surface to captivate the thrill-seeking racing fans. Accord Speedway sponsored the Checkered Flag Bonus on Friday night. The eight feature event race card was completed at 11:30 PM.
When all was said and done, “Showtime” Danny Tyler put his right foot to the floor and captured his second consecutive win of the season in the United Pump and Tank Modified division. “The Bushkill Bullet” Kyle Rohner remained the hot ticket at the speedway as he drove a fine race to capture his fourth win of the season in the Arkel Motors Sportsman headliner. “The Intimidator” Ray Tarantino withstood a ton of challenges to emerge victorious for his third win of the season in the Upstate Auto Pure Stock finale. “The Hurricane” Hunter Lapp put together a masterful ride to race to his first ever win in the WRWD Radio Rookie Sportsman shootout. Larry McVay had a fast hot rod underneath him as he raced to his first ever win in the WRWD Radio NEWS Sprint encounter. Jaden Sleight raced to his first ever win in the Want Ad Digest Junior Slingshot main event. Mike Houghtaling had the hot ticket as he drove to his second win in the Northeast Vintage Modified finale. The final event of the evening was the Emmanuel’s Marketplace 4-Cylinder Enduro feature and although he crossed the finish line in second place, Dave Donovan was awarded the win due to a foul committed by Johnny Bankich, who was announced the winner at the finish.
The Modified field came down for the start of the 30-lap main event with Brian Malcolm blasting out front and leading the first five laps. A restart found Joe Judge having lots of gas pedal and he led the next three laps. A trio of contenders emerged on the next restart and Tyler wasted no time in wresting the lead away from Judge while Jimmy Wells and the returning Rich Ricci Jr found their way around him too. A couple more cautions slowed the pace but Tyler showed his speed by being able to build on his lead in the clean air. In the final laps of the event, Tyler was able to build up a huge lead and crossed the finish line for his second consecutive victory at Accord. Jimmy Wells was the runner-up with Rich Ricci Jr nailing down third place after starting eleventh, Jesse Marks was fourth and Brian Malcolm was fifth. The second five was headed up by Scott Ferrier with Kevin Ward, Richard Smith, Ken Ferrier and the returning Tommy Johnson completing the top ten.
Chris VanDuser seized command of the Arkel Motors Sportsman event at the start but a mad scramble involving seven cars quickly brought the race to a halt. All eyes were on the front row for the restart and VanDuser grabbed the lead and would be challenged for the sixteen laps by Nick Plumstead. The ebb and flow came into play as Plumstead was able to put the nose of his race car under VanDuser at times only to have VanDuser find the magic at the top of the speedway ladder to remain in front. Things were heating up not only in the front but some masterful driving from Kyle Rohner brought him from deep in the pack to become a contender. Plumstead slipped past VanDuser on lap-17 only to have VanDuser hustle back to narrowly lead laps 18 and 19. In the meantime, Rohner pulled up on the leaders and utilized his view from the catbird seat in determining how he would go from third to first. Rohner had a great run into turns one and two and pulled down on the lower apron to make it three wide. As they entered turn three, Rohner emerged as the leader. Once in front, Rohner pulled away to his fourth win of the season in what had to be one of the best Sportsman features to date anywhere. Plumstead was second in a great drive, with Cole Hentschel third, Tyler Johnston fourth and Chris VanDuser settling for fifth. The second five was headed up by Tony Kowalchuk with Jimmy Johnson, Milton Mann, Brandon McGill and Corey Cormier following.
The WRWD Radio Rookie Sportsman event had Michael Corbin blasting into the lead from his pole start. A mad skirmish brought the field to a halt. On the restart Corbin would lead the initial lap but bobbled in turn two the next time around and Hunter Lapp seized the opportunity to vault out front. A couple of restarts would bring the field back together but Lapp was up to the challenge to keep the field at bay and he would race to his first ever full size car win at Accord. Corbin was second with Fred Smith third, Jared Miller fourth and Alex VanPelt completing the top five. The remainder of the finishers included Ryan McCartney, Tom Vasta, John DeWitt, Vinny Visconti, and Kevin Stevens.
The WRWD Radio NEWS Sprint car feature attraction had Larry McVay jumping out front at the start with Brett Graham taking up the chase. Tom Radivoy found the line he was seeking and slipped past Graham and chased after McVay. McVay was in the zone as he raced to his first ever Accord Speedway victory. Radivoy was second with Jeremy Quick third, Graham fourth and Eric Jennings rounding out the top five. Bob Tersillo and Corey Wood were the final finishers.
Pole sitter Travis Brockner wasted no time in seizing control of the Upstate Auto Pure Stock feature attraction as he won the battle for the lead in turn one. Brockner would lead the first five laps before yielding to the high flying Ray Tarantino on a restart. Once in front, Tarantino opened up some distance between he and Brockner as he found the top of the raceway very much to his liking and he glued himself to the top shelf for the remainder of the event to capture his third win of the season. Brockner would race to second place with Bob Sleight third, John Hechinger fourth and Emerson Cargain rallying to nail down fifth place.
Jaden Sleight blasted out front at the drop of the green flag and led all of the way to earn his first ever victory at Accord. Ashton DeWitt completed the field and put up a good battle all of the way.
The Northeast Vintage Modifieds opened up with Ray See grabbing the early lead until the halfway point of the event when Mike Houghtaling drove by him. Houghtaling built up a big lead to go on and win his second straight event at Accord. Bob Schmidt raced to second place with Robbie Casti third, John Roese fourth and Bill Liese following. Liese was the first Sportsman across the line
The Emmanuel’s Marketplace 4-Cylinder Enduro finale found Gene Helms leading the way until a red flag stopped the action. On the restart, a lapped car ran into Helms and stayed glued to him into the first turn where they both spun out and Billy Watson assumed command of the event. A couple of laps later Watson found himself running into the unforgiving boiler plate causing another red flag. Dave Donovan and Johnny Bankich were now at the point with another red flag flying and Bankich passing Donovan with the red flag being displayed. Bankich would go on and win the race and would later be penalized for his infraction handing the win over to Donovan, his third of the season. Bankich settled for second with Helms third, Adam Murphy fourth and Richard Smith fifth.
Kudos to Gary Palmer for working right up until race time to have the track in superb condition for the evening after the three consecutive rainouts. Kudos also to Race Director Dave Rocket and Staff for a high quality quickly run program that was forced to start late due to a late arriving ambulance.
Heat races were run off quickly and Sportsman heat wins went to Tyler Johnston, Jimmy Johnson and Dave Demorest. Jared Miller and Hunter Lapp captured the Rookie Sportsman heat events. Modified heats were claimed by Brian Malcolm, Jesse Marks and Ken Ferrier. Jaden Sleight was victorious in the Slingshot heat. Bob Sleight and Ray Tarantino were triumphant in the Pure Stock heat encounters and Tom Radivoy and Larry McVay captured the NEWS Sprint Car heats.
New cars and new faces dotted the Accord landscape on Friday evening as RJ Daley returned to the Accord scene with a Modified race car. Jim Introne, Randy Green and Kurt Hundeland were also new performers in the Modifieds. Jimmy Devitt moved to the Sportsman class and Lenny Helmich debuted a new ride. Keith Johannssen was aboard the former Kenny Ryder K4 machine. John Drake and Craig Cuneo debuted sharp looking new Street Stocks. Former go kart champion at Accord, Gary Huston, shook down the Don Smith sprinter.
The evening of racing excitement was sponsored by Kingston Collision with two locations in Kingston, New York.
Uncle Mike Hanson and son Tim were onboard for the show and Uncle Mike interviewed with announcer Steve Pados.
The speedway offered moments of silence for two members of the racing community who left us during the week. Joe Torrisi, who was close to the speedway in many ways and the Legendary Hall of Fame Modified driver “The Belvidere Bandit” Carl “Fuzzy” Van Horn. It was Van Horn who gave Steve Pados his first shot at announcing races at the now defunct Lake Mocatek Speedway in 2000.
The always popular annual Camera & Autograph Night will take place next Friday, July 28th, on United Pump & Tank night at the speedway. After the heat racing is completed, the fans will be allowed onto the racetrack to visit with their favorite drivers for autographs and driver interviews will be conducted trackside.
The postponed Fireworks Extravaganza scheduled for June 30th will be moved to Labor Day weekend, September 1st, with the Santore’s Group lighting up the sky and the famous Chicken BBQ feeding the hungry crowd.
United Pump & Tank Modifieds: Danny Tyler, Jimmy Wells, Rich Ricci Jr, Jesse Marks, Brian Malcolm, Scott Ferrier,Kevin Ward, Richard Smith, Ken Ferrier, Tommy Johnson, Rob Rowe, Alissa Cody, Eddie Burgess, Ed Dachenhausen, Danny Creeden, RJ Daley, Kurt Hundeland, Joe Judge, Jim Introne, Kyle VanDuser, Randy Green, Brad Rothaupt, Mark Pullen
Arkel Motors Sportsman: Kyle Rohner, Nick Plumstead, Cole Hentschel, Tyler Johnston, Chris VanDuser, Tony Kowalchuk, Jimmmy Johnson, Milton Mann, Brandon McGill, Corey Cormier, Dave Demorest, Brad Horton, Ralph Ronk, Jim Kraus, Jimmy Devitt, Matt Shultz, Phil Goetchius, Rich Ricci III, Shane Henion, Rafael Carson, Lenny Helmich, Mike Murphy
WRWD Radio NEWS Sprint Cars: Larry McVay, Tom Radivoy, Jeremy Quick, Brett Graham, Eric Jennings, Bob Tersillo, Corey Wood, Larry Ricci, Heidi Hedin, Andrew Davis, Gary Huston
Upstate Auto Pure Stocks: Ray Tarantino, Travis Brockner, Bob Sleight, John Hechinger, Emerson Cargain Jr, Chris Kanuk, Steve Williams, (*Austin Smith, *Craig Cuneo, *John Drake, *John Woinoski) *Unsure of final finishing position
WRWD Radio Rookie Sportsman: Hunter Lapp, Michael Corbin, Fred Smith, Jared Miller, Alex VanPelt, Ryan McCartney, Tom Vasta, John DeWitt, Vinny Visconti, Kevin Stevens, John Miller, Keith Johannessen, Jeff Higham
Want Ad Digest Junior Slingshots: Jaden Sleight, Ashton DeWitt
Emmanuel’s Marketplace 4-Cylinder Enduros: Dave Donovan, Johnny Bankich, Gene Helms, Adam Murphy, Richard Smith
Northeast Vintage Modifieds: Mike Houghtaling, Bob Schmidt, Rob Casti, John Roese, Bill Liese, Mike Cole, Ray See, Jeff Hager, John Hager
Racing is on tap every Friday night at Accord Speedway from April through September. Please make note of the new starting times: Pit Gates open at 5:00; Spectator Gates open at 5:30; Hot Laps begin at 7:00 and the racing begins at 7:30 PM. Admission for Adults $14.00; Seniors (65+) $12.00; Children $3.00 (11+ under) Indoor Seating $20.00; Family four pack special: 2 Adults + 2 Children and $20.00 in Accord Bucks for $44.00 (a savings of $10.00)
Special event shows do have an increase in admission.
July 28th is the annual Camera and Autograph Night at Accord Speedway sponsored by United Pump & Tank. All regular divisions will be in action.
For further updates and information regarding all of the news and additions to the Accord Speedway, log on to their well documented website at: http://www.accordspeedway.com or call the speedway hotline at: 845 626 3478.
At the Accord Speedway………………….
A TRAIL OF DIRT LEADS RIGHT TO OUR DOOR